By J.G. Noll
Famously known as military parents, former vice president Joe Biden and his wife, Dr. Jill Biden, will be taking up the mantle of military families once again. Launching February 1, the Biden Foundation will focus on “a wide-ranging agenda, including fighting cancer, preventing sexual assault, supporting military families and promoting education.” These causes are near and dear to the couple’s hearts and were championed by one or both during their time in public service.
The Bidens’ late son, Beau, was a major in the Delaware Army National Guard’s Judge Advocate General Corps, and deployed to Iraq in 2009 for a year. He was awarded the Bronze Star and last year succumbed to brain cancer at the age of 46.
The Biden Foundation’s focus on military families is what seems to be an obvious nod to Joining Forces. Dr. Biden, with former First Lady Michelle Obama, created the program in 2011. Military Times reported that Joining Forces had received “1.25 million hiring commitments for veterans and military spouses from its corporate partners. It also has helped broker legislation enabling spouses to transfer certifications across all 50 states.” Joining Forces also worked with more than 100 colleges to help train future teachers about the needs of military children. 35 communities had committed to reducing veteran homelessness through the program’s efforts. Joining Forces also campaigned for better mental health awareness in the military community, among other highlights.
While there was hope in the military community that Joining Forces would stay as a program in the Trump White House, it appears that the new administration has closed it down.
Incorporated in the Bidens’ home state of Delaware, the foundation will be headquartered in Washington, where the couple will live at least part-time. While presidents often create foundations like the Carter Center, Clinton Foundation, George W. Bush Institute, and Obama Foundation, vice presidents who do the same usually receive little fanfare. Former vice president Al Gore created The Climate Reality Project, with the purpose of fighting climate change and global warming.
The Biden Foundation “will not accept donations from foreign citizens, entities, or other source…but will accept money from private foundations or donor-advised fund, a well as corporate foundations.” Donations to the foundation will be tax-deductible.
Joe and Jill Biden announce The Biden Foundation in new vid, plan to focus on cancer research, violence against women, foreign policy issues pic.twitter.com/z6296Cp8wi
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) February 1, 2017
This is not the first non-profit created by the Biden family. The Beau Biden Foundation for the Protection of Children is run by Biden family members; however, neither the former vice president or his wife sit on its board.